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Monday, September 10, 2012

Twenty-One-Ing

I'm reclining on a hideous-in-a-cool-way vintage couch that once lived in my late (incredible, inspiring) grandpa's work office, watching the sun set over the 1800s red brick architecture of my university campus, huffing the glorious fumes of a baking batch of cookies, whose recipe I just created on a whim. My roommate is off somewhere, allowing me to guiltlessly lounge pantsless and let my favorite Julia Nunes album play without headphones. I think you know, but just for the record, I only like you for your large hands...

This is one of those pretty moments that remind me of just how important pretty moments are. When I'm fifty years old and I think "college," my mind will probably go to that one professor who really believed in my poetry, the tornado that forced my nineteenth birthday party into a windowless hallway with a group of strangers and half a cake, waiting in the same line for the same late-night burrito every drunken weekend. Chances are, I won't commit a lot of this to memory-- the sipping tea, the listening to myself typing, the ignoring a sink of dirty dishes, the messy bun on top my head. I won't remember this pair of brown sandals, about which there is nothing at all special or extraordinary, but who took my feet for long walks around Chicago and out to karaoke with my best friend and shopping with my mom for the first time that I insisted I purchase all my own clothes. I won't always remember twenty-one with the kind of reverence I currently feel it deserves. I won't be able to conjure up this feeling of being equal parts confident and insecure about my body, equal parts excited and terrified about future job possibilities, equal parts comfortable in the world and anxious as hell. I won't remember how it feels like a victory every time I get through a phone call with a doctor's office without stumbling over my words like a little kid, or how it feels to have someone refer to you as "that woman over there" and realize they don't mean "woman" as a condescending compliment, but a genuine descriptor. I won't remember that little sinking in my stomach when it occurred to me that blue nail polish looks kind of silly on me now, or how I actually hold my breath every time I check my bank statement, or how eating a grocery store doughnut in a parking lot no longer sounds like an awesome idea. This state of twenty-one-ness that makes up my entire life right now will be gone and virtually forgotten as soon as the next stage starts... so this evening, I'm making an effort to soak it up.

I hope you guys have a lovely night! I'm off now to fill myself with banana-oatmeal-dark-chocolate-graham-cracker cookies and throw another filthy bowl on top my pyramid of neglected dishes. I should probably feel guilty about it, but who has time for that? I have a lot more twenty-one-ing to do before bed.


P.S. I posted a new video yesterday! This week's Answerly video (my series of advice for college students) is up as well.

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